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Where does The Guild of the Cowry Catchers rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
Guild of the Cowry Catchers, among a few other titles by similarly less known or new writers on the block, has proven to me that you don't have to read main stream sci fi or fantasy to be impressed by the quality of the story and the hard work an author puts into his or her work. Right now? It ranks higher than any fantasy fiction I've read that focuses on character development. If you are into character development you will get it here in spades for the main characters and even some of the supporting ones!
What did you like best about this story?
The story was good, but the voice acting and the conversations between two of the main characters really made the story shine and gave life to the characters that transcend the writing. As for the actual story, I was really into the theme of loss and redemption for those that seek it and those that find it for those that are afraid to seek it.
What about Abigail Hilton and Full Cast ’s performance did you like?
Without the Full Cast you are missing roughly 49 percent of the Cowry Catchers Experience. I am deadly serious here. I am usually a visual learner. I read something or see something then let my imagination take its course. But full cast audio, really really adds to the imagery to the point where the characters feel like they are alive, that they actually do have feelings instead of being constructs of the ink on a piece of paper.
Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
The first time I read the book series, I was caught off guard by the latter developments of the third book. Sure the story was never rainbows and sunshine in terms of tone and age advisory, but I felt that audible could use a disclaimer or an age rating system that the author can place.
Any additional comments?
This story is an adult novel, not meant for children in their preteens or even for close minded adults. It is for readers with an active imagination that long for stories that break the conventions of the typical high fantasy or dark fantasy novels. It is for people that HATE HATE HATE HATE twilight type of teen "romance" fiction. It is for people that want substance to any romantic relationship and realistic reactions between several characters with troubled and disturbing pasts.
But even though I say those things, I won't sugarcoat what goes on in the novel in terms of the adult stuff. In short, there are seemingly homosexual relationships that either exist or develop through the course of the book series. There are weird things you don't typically see in a high magic fantasy novel. There is surprisingly light combat for a tale of high swashbuckling adventure (har har). There is a lot of talking between characters with great voice acting. Some of the musical and sound selections will feel odd or out of place. You will NEVER grow bored.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Would you consider the audio edition of The Guild of the Cowry Catchers to be better than the print version?
The Guild of the Cowry Catchers was the first audio book I ever listened to when it was in podcast form, and Abigail Hilton spoiled me rotten with the amazing production values this book had. Full cast audio, haunting (and sometimes hilarious) music, and full sound effects make this the finest production I've ever heard.
The remaster on some of the lines in the early books corrects any flaws in the initial podcast recording. Understand that this started out as an 'indy' podcast, and Abigail Hilton put out a product for free that I feel was far superior to the vast majority of 'professional' recordings. The Audible.com production is fully remastered, and is well worth the cost of admission based solely on that. Let me reiterate that this is the best production I've ever heard, and you will ask yourself going forward why every audio book isn't fully voiced with music and sound effects.
This book in 'paper' form (started as an exclusive e-book) made me purchase everything Hilton ever writes, this audio book production got me into audio books.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Guild of the Cowry Catchers?
There are a whole bunch of scenes in this series which continue to strike me whenever I hear them, but the character of Silvio Lamire makes the statement in the 2nd book how he intends to "Walk in over sand, and walk out over bodies," concerning an island believed to harbor in individual the main characters are hunting. I won't spoil anything, but the realization of what that statement means is utterly chilling.
Have you listened to any of Abigail Hilton and Full Cast ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
Go ahead and use any extra credits or cash to buy 'The Prophet of Panamindorah' and 'Secret Things' from Audible. 'Prophet' is set in the same universe as 'Cowry Catchers' just a different location, time period, and tone of the story. It's also got the music and sound effects, but is narrated solely by Abigail Hilton. 'Secret Things' is a collection of shorts which are prequels of the 'Cowry Catchers" main characters; half are full cast while the other half are narrated by Abigail Hilton.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
In the 4th book Gerard is taken to a gambling den with his allies to deal with a local crime boss. After breathing in some 'questionable' drug-laden censer smoke he's taken outside for some fresh air. There he confides in an ally the feelings he has towards the man he has come to love (yes, you heard that right). In a moment of unintentional inebriation the normally stoic exterior of Gerard Holovar is ripped open for the reader to catch a glimpse of the depths of emotion he tends to keep bottled up through most of the story. This character is dragged through the emotional wringer over the course of this book in ways that most authors are utterly incapable of portraying. This scene in particular would be moving enough with just the vocal performance, but the musical selection accompanying it made the scene downright haunting as we watch a particularly strong character succumb to a moment of emotional weakness.
Any additional comments?
I must give a warning for everybody, there is a homosexual subplot in this novel in which two central male characters fall in love with each other. You WILL get hooked by this book before the subplot becomes apparent, and you will not be capable of putting it down once it does. Please don't be alarmed by this; the plotline, world building, and character progression are top notch, and you will understand what draws these two particular characters together as you experience this series of novels.
Warning #2, some people would consider the 5th book as sexually explicit in some parts. I personally don't think it's too bad, but tastes vary. Much like George RR Martin's 'A Song of Ice and Fire' series, this book series is not meant for children. Even without the sexually explicit content in the 5th book, the entire series is violent, dark, gory, and oh so entertaining in all the ways we tried to hide from our parents when we were teenagers.
I don't often say this, but this is one of the best things I've ever read in the past 20+ years of reading sci-fi and fantasy. If you believe certain aspects of this book seem 'icky' then I implore you to give it a chance. Welcome, by the way, to the ever growing army of slightly rabid Abigail Hilton fans.
10 of 12 people found this review helpful
What did you like most about The Guild of the Cowry Catchers?
The characters were so believable and I was able to picture them easily. I found myself completely absorbed in this fantasy world.
Who was your favorite character and why?
All of the characters were excellent with their own characters and foibles. If I had to choose it would probably be either Gerard, Silveo or Twain but I cannot pick just one.
Which scene did you most enjoy?
Perhaps the rising of the Phoenix and Silveo appearing from beneath his wing or the picture of Gerard in the mill trying to keep his head above water.
If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
Come join in this fantasy world of intrigue, conflict, magic and love.
Any additional comments?
I would just like to say that the voice actors were magnificent and brought all the characters to life showing their individual talents,.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
voices become boring story line fragmented too much time spent on soft sex. basic story fine. promised much delivered little.